Curiosities and Acquisitions
Dozens of monastic orders exist in Faerûn. Most are small circles of no more than a dozen or so members, living in isolated monasteries in the wilderness. A few orders include hundreds of members and influence events across entire nations. Some of the prominent orders include:
Broken Ones (Good): Of all the popular deities of Faerûn, Ilmater is the deity most associated with an order of monks who act purely in his name. The Broken Ones can freely multiclass as clerics, divine champions, arcane devotees, divine disciples, hierophants, and divine seekers of Ilmater. The Dalelands house no monasteries of great fame, but monks of Ilmater frequently travel through the Dales, sheltering in Ilmater’s temples if they cannot find other lodging.
Dark Moon (Evil): Shar is worshiped by a powerful sect of monks who maintain open temples in lands ruled by evil overlords or hide among hills, back alleys, or the Underdark. Most of the Dark Moon monks are human, but occasionally they are joined by a half-orc, shade, or drow. The monks of the Dark Moon can freely multiclass as sorcerers so long as their monk level and sorcerer level stay within two levels of each other.
Hin Fist (Neutral or Good): The halflings of Luiren turn their confidence into belief in the power of a single halfling to master herself and the world. Enterprising Luiren monks sometimes establish monasteries in the north. Although only halflings can study Hin Fist in Luiren, some Hin Fist monasteries outside Luiren accept exceptional gnomes and dwarves. Monks of the Hin Fist order can multiclass as fighters, rogues, or paladins (usually of Yondalla).
Long Death (Evil): The Long Death order worships the principle of death without caring much which deity currently owns the portfolio. They are more than willing to share death and its antecedent, pain, with others. Clerics of the previous god of death, Myrkul, chose to view them as part of their god’s long-range plans. Kelemvor (the current god of the dead) views them as enemies, but is at least pleased that they do not actively promote undeath. Velsharoon (the god of necromancy and undeath) wants to woo them, but has not figured out how. Monks of the Long Death may multiclass freely as fighters, assassins, and blackguards. This order is quite strong in Thay, though not with the sanction or cooperation of the Red Wizards.
Old Order (Neutral, Sometimes Good, Rarely Evil): Monks of the Old Order do not worship any deity, but are devoted to the philosophy espoused by a deity who is either now dead or has never existed on the Material Plane of Toril. The monks contradict themselves on this point, but the deity’s identity isn’t important to them, it’s the message they care about. The Old Order never has huge monasteries, but has spread widely throughout Faerûn. Monks of the Old Order can multiclass freely as rogues, sorcerers, and shadowdancers, but must maintain more monk levels than their combined levels of other classes.
Shining Hand (Neutral): The Shining Hand is one of the oldest monk orders of Amn, mixing faith in Azuth and the practice of wizardry with monastic devotions. Amn’s crackdown on the practice of wizardry has sent some Shining Hand groups underground and sent others out into the wider world. Monks of the Shining Hand can multiclass freely as wizards so long as their monk level equals or exceeds their wizard level.
Sun Soul (Good or Neutral): The allegiance of this widespread but disorganized sect varies between groups, some following Lathander, others Selûne, and a few devoted to Sune. The Sun Soul order, along with the Old Order, is the most likely to have monasteries hidden in far flung wilderness areas.
Yellow Rose (Good, Neutral): Also known as the Disciples of Saint Sollars, this solitary monastery of Ilmater worshipers in the Earthspur Mountains of Damara is known for loyalty to its allies and destruction to its enemies. Greatly respected on matters of truth and diplomacy, the monks work hard to survive in their harsh remote sanctuary. The monks often travel with Ilmataran paladins, particularly from the Order of the Golden Cup. They may multiclass freely as rangers and shadowdancers.